COURT SAYS LANDOWNER CAN REFUSE ACCESS TO COAL COMPANY
The Land and Environment Court has upheld Wendy Bowman’s right to refuse a coal company access to her land. The landmark decision means that Chinese-owned Yancoal cannot proceed with the South East Open Cut mine near Glennies Creek.
The court ruled in December that Yancoal must acquire Bowman’s whole 190-hectare property before the project could proceed. She refuses to sell the land, which has about 60% of the coal that Yancoal wants to mine.
This is the first time that a court has ordered that a mining company must buy a whole property if it wants to open an open cut mine.
BAN ON CATTLE GRAZING IN ALPINE NATIONAL PARKS
Legislation passed on May 5 bans cattle from grazing in Victorian Alpine and River Red Gum national parks.
Victorian National Parks Association executive director Matt Ruchel said: “National parks are the cornerstone of our efforts to protect and conserve nature. They are parks not paddocks.
“NSW, the ACT and Tasmania have all disallowed cattle grazing in alpine parks. Victoria has now caught up.”
Cattle threaten the survival of rare species, spread weeds, cause erosion and damage our important water catchments.
“This is a victory for nature and good science and hopefully we can now focus our effort on better managing our fabulous alpine and red gum habitats,” Ruchel said.
GHANA COURT ORDERS TEMPORARY HALT TO COMMERCIALISATION OF GM CROPS
A Fast Track High Court in Accra, Ghana has ordered the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to halt all the production and sale of genetically modified (GM) products in the country.
Food Sovereignty Ghana (FSG) is a grass-roots movement dedicated to the promotion of food sovereignty in Ghana. FSG took the ministry to court seeking an injunction to prevent them from commercialising the sale of GM foods in the country. The Ghana National Association of Farmers and Fisherfolk (GNAFF) joined FSG in the case.
FSG and GNAAF argued that commercialisation of GM foods will undermine and damage traditional farming practices and create an unnecessary threat to public health, water resources, air and the natural environment.
On May 4 the court ordered a temporary injunction preventing the sale or production of GM food until the case is completed.